YFD Senior Spotlight: 12 Questions w/ Arielle Aney

1) How long have you been on YFD?
Since the spring before freshman year. So...4 years.

2) Why did you choose the school you will attend next year?
Because I got in (lol). Seriously speaking, CMU is a great STEM school and presents me with lots of opportunities.

3) Do you know what you want to study? If so, what?
My listed major is chemistry. At the very least, If I don't follow through with that, I'm probably going to study something STEM-y.

4) What is your favorite memory of being on YFD?
I've always loved the training trips. One of my few opportunities to be around other people for extended periods of time and my parents aren't there. I miss buying like 100 water balloons from Dollar Tree. We had a water balloon fight that year which was very fun.

5) What is the hardest set you can remember doing?
Low-key it feels like quarantine has wiped most of my memories about actually swimming. I don't like 400 IM sets...I don't like it when we do a lot of butterfly or long distance.

6) What is your favorite Amine story?
On my first trip to ISCA--I think it was the last day, or second-to-last day--after finals i went to the beach with Amine, Tyler and Emilio. On the trip there we were playing Pokemon Go. The sunset was gorgeous. I have a picture saved on my computer somewhere...Tyler, Emilio and I played monkey in the middle with a ball we brought. I made Emilio dare me to throw the ball at Amine in return for ice cream (I didn't really want the ice cream; i just wanted an excuse to do something silly). It bounced right off his head and Emilio filmed it and I still have a low quality version of it saved (on Snapchat, I think). That was fun.

7) If you could go back in time and tell yourself something as a younger swimmer, what would it be?
Grind it out. The advice still applies LOL.

8) How did you balance academics and being a competitive swimmer?
Not well lol. I really should have done better haha...I learned that sometimes it's better to go to bed early and do as much work as possible at school, as opposed to staying up, not getting anything done, and feeling bad that you wasted all your time to sleep. Like, if you go to bed early, at least you had an excuse for not getting stuff done. And it's better in the long run.

9) What is your favorite pre-meet meal?
Stuff with peanut butter (e.g. bagels, sometimes just plain bread), yogurt, and bananas.

10) What is your favorite event and why?
Hmm. I like the 200 free SC because how dope it feels to build it well. 50 free LC can be great if you do it well. 100 free is like "gotta go fast :D". Idk haha.

11) What is your proudest accomplishment to date?
Getting 27.64 for LC 50 free last year was pretty cool.

12) Do you have any advice for the younger swimmers on the team who might want to swim collegiately?
Reach out to coaches early? I did a pretty bad job with that. Try not to get injured during your Junior and Senior years! That's when your times matter.